Hi Everyone, I'm new to gardening and to this forum. I planted sugar snap peas in March (I live in the Denver, CO area) and am now noticing that the leaves are starting to turn yellow from the bottom up and several plants have already died. About a week before that, the plants looked like they had stopped growing.
I am now noticing that the beets in my garden also have stopped growing and the leaves are turning yellow and spotted. It seems like everything else we try to grow in our raised garden bed sprouts up quickly and then stops growing (squash, scallions, etc). Does anyone have any ideas on what might be causing this and how to fix it?
Not much help here. Just guessing. The weather is not helping, 90 today and frost two days ago. Now they are saying highs in the low 50's the next two days. Most everything is burned from the high winds.
My peas look about like yours. The beans are taller then the peas. Carrots have not changed in 10 days.
Posts: 27 | Location: Zone 5 Kersey CO | Registered: January 22, 2010
Thanks Bonnie, It's helpful to know that it's probably just the crazy weather and hopefully not something we're doing wrong! I did notice that the squash we recently planted seems to be doing better. I have a feeling all of our cool weather plants will just need to be replanted at the end of the summer. Thanks again!
Michelle - This is just a hunch, but have you recently added a lot of fertilizer - manure or compost? The beds look hot to me, which will cause the yellowing and early demise. Peas are particularly sensitive to hot soil (manure or compost which has not been properly aged and is still actively decomposing in the soil.)
I am at higher altitude and have milder temps, but have not noticed any negative impact from the weather.
Posts: 1422 | Location: Indian Hills, CO - zone 4 | Registered: May 14, 2007
Mgarden plants are doing fine even my beete but the second plantin of seeds in the green house sprouted but never got big enough to set out in the garden, some of my neughbors have had the same problem,
Posts: 184 | Location: zone 7 N AL | Registered: February 11, 2002
I'm sorry to hear about everyone's stunted veggies, but relieved that I'm not the only one. My beets have been an inch high for 3 months! Now I'm battling the voles. Just had county fair and only entered peas and turnips which were both first plantings this year as my father moved in from MO.
Posts: 104 | Location: Zone 3/4 Daniel, WY | Registered: March 19, 2006
Ohhhhhh, am I glad to know I'm not the only one. I'm near Westclliffe at 8k feet and have been told that anything I try to grow will take twice as long and grow to 1/2 the size. The only thing doing well in my raised bed is the strawberries. I used good top soil, store-bought manure, and moisture control soil from Miracle Grow. I started seeds inside in a small greenhouse, but didn't get them in the garden outside when I should have (I think). When I did most of my gardening, I lived in MI with all soil being rich BLACK dirt. Dropping something on the ground was all it took to grow something, so I didn't have to learn anything about gardening. I really want to stay away from genetically modified food, so am trying to grow veggies, strawberries, and raspberries. HELP!
We live in Monument CO., at 7,000 feet. Our garden last year was the same way. We started over since our soil was too poor. Added a mix of organic topsoil, with 3 year old compost and some sand.
Our corn did not grow too well, because of the cold. It was an experiment anyway. But we have had a great garden this year. We watered more than usual, it added $18 per month to our water bill.
We have had great beans, peas and zucchini. Our Tomatoes are going nuts, as are some of my friends out east who are @ 7500 feet elevation.
We do not have any empty space in our garden, so there were no weeds to speak of and this kept the soil more moist. Hope that this helps! Looking forward to hearing what works for you as we grow more great food!
My guess, its the soil. May I just put in a word about soil?
Most of us have better soil on our plots already that can be bought. Soil does not come in a bag. Compost is not soil. Leaf mold is not soil. Potting soil in a bag is not soil. These things may be called soil substitutes or soil amendments.
Soil is the name for that miraculous thin covering of the earth which is made up of sand, silt, clay, humus, organic matter, water, air, chemical substances, and a host of small living organisms. Soil is what makes it possible for the flora of the Earth to grow and prosper.
Real soil grows the best plants. May I suggest some reading?
This is just a start. The internet abounds with good reading about real soil. Do the research.
Yes, peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite are often used in fake soil mixes for growing nursery plants. You can bet those mixes have been enriched with a good NPK fertilizer. The advantage of these types of soils is they are lightweight and not likely to have weed seeds in them. The disadvantage is that the nutrients are quickly depleted since these things are devoid of nutrients in the beginning. It really does help these soils to have some compost added, but even compost doesn't supply many of the needed minerals in adequate supply. You only get them from sand, silt and clay.
Have a great gardening day!
Posts: 1919 | Location: Utah 5000 ft elev. Zone 4/5 | Registered: April 02, 2003
I concur with what James_1 said, plus have a few more thoughts.
We do have much better soil in the high desert than is popularly acknowledged, mostly because the gold standard is that dark humus rich soil we see in all the pictures (and stores).
Our soils tend to be loaded with minerals, but very low in organics. Hence lighter. That isn't such a bad thing for leguminous plants like peas.
There are two possibilities I'll add regarding your stunted growth, as I've observed the identical problem at 7k feet in north central new mexico trying to grow snap peas.
They all start off awesome, but then peter out.
I would have a close look at:
- consistent soil moisture (snap peas like it consistently moist, but not sopping wet) - soil depth and tilth (this is important)
Snap Peas don't seem to have the same ability to penetrate downward through hard pan as other plants. Hence, nice initial growth, followed by stagnancy. At least that's the theory. Don't forget, if the roots can only go so deep, their ability to ferret out new moisture and nutrients is limited.
I've noticed that all peas grown in deeper soils do much better here. This is one of the reasons they are often grown with carrots I'd suspect.
For instance, I planted a bunch of peas in a hole I dug with an earth auger in a low spot on the north side of a fruit tree (just inside the water ring). So, the soil not only stayed moister (being low and deep), but the roots could grow down more freely down into the hole with the loosened soil. I'm sure it also found some of the existing tree root passages which aided it. Other bonuses are that it stays cool and shaded in that location and may add some nitrogen for the fruit tree, and have something close by to vine onto.